Today, BT has launched two new ultrafast fibre broadband packages. BT Ultrafast 1 and 2 run at max download speeds of 152Mbps and 314Mbps respectively and, uniquely here in the UK, add a 100Mbps speed guarantee.
According to a report by ISP Review, the new packages support both the latest hybrid fibre G.fast and 'full fibre' FTTP (Fibre-to-the-Premises) technologies. Previously BT offered Infinity 3 and 4 tiers, with 200Mbps (20Mbps upload) and 300Mbps (30Mbps upload) based on FTTP, but thanks to successful G.Fast hybrid trials (encompassing a million homes) BT Ultrafast 1 and 2 should be more widely available than the packages they replace. By the end of 2020 G.Fast is expected to cover 10 million premises, and FTTP to reach 2 million premises.
Boasting about its new offerings, BT says that its Ultrafast Fibre is 10x faster than the UK average speed at peak times. BT Ultrafast 2, for example, can "download an HD movie in under six minutes, even at the busiest times".
As mentioned in the intro BT is trying to differentiate its service quality by offering a 100Mbps speed guarantee. Even at peak times this guarantee stands. "You’ll always get the download speeds you pay for – whatever time of day," pledges the telecoms firm.
Interestingly subscribers could possibly rake back some of the service fees if they ever suffer from slower speeds. If you test your speed on the My BT pages and the result is below 100Mbps you can claim £20, says BT.
"Speed guarantee: Up to four claims per year. Check your speed at bt.com/fasterspeeds or by calling 0800 800 150. Excludes outages, connection faults and home wiring outside of BT’s control. You’ll receive a £20 prepaid BT Reward Card within 30 days of a successful claim. Activate within 90 days."
We don't have definitive figures for upload speeds but ISP Review reckons BT Ultrafast 1 and 2 will be able to send up data as fast as 30Mbps and 50Mbps, respectively. The new packages are available on 18 month contracts, at £55 and £60 per month respectively. New customers qualify for a £110 BT Reward Card (a pre-paid MasterCard) when they sign-up but there may be a £60 setup fee, depending upon what services your house is already connected to.
Other companies will be rolling out G.Fast products in the near future.
Virgin Media, which uses its own independent fibre network, offers packages with up to 300Mbps download speeds.